Kei Nishikori suffers another setback amid brutal luck in 2023 comeback

This year, Nishikori returned after 20 months of absence but his injury issues continued.

by Dzevad Mesic
Kei Nishikori suffers another setback amid brutal luck in 2023 comeback
© Getty Images Sport - Adam Hagy

Kei Nishikori, 33, has withdrawn from the upcoming Yokkaichi Challenger and his 2023 season is officially over, the Japan Tennis Association announced. For Nishikori, not being able to play in Yokkaichi is just another blow and bad luck.

Nishikori, who returned to tennis after a 20-month absence in June, picked up a knee injury in his fourth comeback since returning. Since contracting a knee injury at the Atlanta Open in July, Nishikori has been sidelined. Nishikori's hope for the final part of the 2023 season was to appear in a few Challenger tournaments in Japan and then kick off his preparation for 2024 and the Australian Open.

Unfortunately for Nishikori, he was forced to miss all Japanese Challenger events where he signed up, including the Yokkaichi event that starts on November 27th. Following the latest setback, Nishikori's 2024 Australian Open comeback may also be in doubt.

Nishikori just wants to play again

After battling various injuries and undergoing hip surgery in 2022 January, former world No 4 Nishikori finally returned to action in June at the Palmas del Mal Challenger, where he won the title.

Nishikori then competed in two more Challenger tournaments before his knee started troubling him in his ATP comeback in Atlanta. Recently, Nishikori said he just wants to be healthy enough to play. "In June I came back for the first time in a while and played in a few events, started feeling better.

Then my knee started getting worse, and here I am. I had to withdraw from all the event, the US Open that I was really looking forward to playing the Japan Open, and Challengers in Japan, that's really painful. This is a matter of my own body, I know I can't make an excuse, but still these days I feel like 'Hey why couldn't you allow me to play matches, it's enough, it's about time," Nishikori said in late October.

Kei Nishikori